Description from Flora of China
Herbs to 1.5 m tall, perennial. Stems erect, branched above, ribbed, unwinged, with long multicellular hairs and cobwebby; synflorescence branches densely felted. Leaves discolorous, surface smooth, abaxially grayish white and densely felted, adaxially green and with multicellular hairs. Basal leaves withered at anthesis. Cauline leaves sessile, ± narrowly elliptic, 9-21 × 4-7 cm, pinnately lobed or pinnatifid, auriculate semiamplexicaul; segments 3-8 pairs, elliptic to broadly triangular, toothed; teeth fringed with ca. 2 mm spinules and with a ca. 4 mm apical spine; terminal segment largest. Bracts similar to leaves or with spiny teeth. Peduncles ca. 2 cm. Capitula 4-8, racemose. Involucre campanulate, 2.5-3 cm in diam., glabrous or sparsely cobwebby. Phyllaries imbricate, in ca. 6 rows, lacking marginal spinules, wings, and scarious appendage; outer and middle phyllaries triangular to triangular-lanceolate, 6-9 × 1-1.5 mm, abaxially with a dark resinous gland, apex acute and tipped with a 0.8-1.2 mm spinule; inner phyllaries linear-lanceolate to linear, 14-22 × 0.5-1.5 mm, apex acuminate and scarious. Florets bisexual. Corolla purplish red, ca. 2.3 cm, tube ca. 1.2 cm. Achene yellowish, ca. 5 mm, striate. Pappus bristles dirty brown, ca. 2.2 cm. Fl. and fr. Apr-Jun.
● Mountain valleys, mountain slopes, forests, forest margins; 1000-1300 m. W Fujian, NE Guangxi, SW Guizhou, SW Hunan, NE Jiangxi, SE Yunnan.